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Sites and Sounds of Uganda
BIRDS OF UGANDA: The Cattle EgretPublish Date: Nov 02, 2013
BIRDS OF UGANDA: The Cattle Egret
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PICTURE BY MATTHIAS MUGISHA
newvision

 By Matthias Mugisha

The cattle egret (Bubulcusibis) is a species of heron that nests near water bodies, though it feeds in drier habitats compared to other herons. Some cattle egrets are migratory. Cattle egrets often accompany cattle or other large mammals like bufallos and rhinos, eating insects like ticks and flies that disturb them.
 
Males choose a new mate every season. When making nests, the males collect the sticks, while the females arrange them. These small sticks are a hot item as they will steal them from other birds when they are scarce.
 
Incubation for the cattle egrets lasts about 23 days, with both sexes sharing incubation duties. The chicks become independent by day 45.
 
Cattle egrets are also known as cow crane, cow bird, cow heron and elephant bird. Its Arabic name, abuqerdan, means “father of ticks.”
 
Biological data
 
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Ciconiiformes
Family: Ardeidae
Genus: Bubulcus Bonaparte, 1855
Species: B. ibis
Binomial name: Bubulcus ibis

 

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